Friday, September 4, 2009

Nicaragua 2009: La Chureca (The Managua City Dump)

On Wednesday we went to La Chureca, I think John described it aptly when he said, "words alone can not describe just how bad this place was....It is probably the closest thing imaginable to 'hell on earth'!" What we saw and experienced there changed my perception of poverty, it destroyed my idea of need. Growing up in a military family I thought I had seen poverty, we lived over seas and traveled to many places including Korea and Bali where I visited and experienced how some of the poor in these areas lived. Even with these memories I was completely unprepared for what I experienced at La Chureca. I had never seen young children, the same age as mine, running around barefoot through trash, rusty metal, broken glass, and medical waste.

The following is what Kelli saw and experienced at the dump that day and later at Masaya where we went to "recover":

"The dump was excruciating to me. It felt like someone took my heart out and stomped on it and didn't stop there. They then picked it up and put it in a blender and turned it into liquid. It hurt my soul and mind. I will never be the same because of it. The kids have no choice, it seems to me that a parent would find a way, any way out or make another choice than to have their kids in a place like that. There should be NO reason to raise kids in a place like that! God knew that I was hurting deeply after that. I wanted to grab all the kids I saw digging in trash and take them home with me. I physically felt like I could not walk and by the grace of God, He walked me out of that place."
Once out of the dump and at Masaya a rain storm came raging across the lake that fills the old volcano. The wind was incredible, in fact I would say it rivaled some strong tropical storms I have been in, and was really driving the rain. The rest of the team got under cover and joyfully watched Kelli.

"During the storm I felt like God was washing me through and through. He cleansed my soul and spoke to me. The wind was not pushing me down or knocking me over. It was picking me up and surrounding me like arms would. I felt like fingers rubbing my back letting me know that it would be okay. That those kids would be in Heaven and have a wonderful, clean, place next to Jesus. Right next to Jesus, not down the block or around the corner, but right next to Him. That Jesus is wrapping His arms around them day and night and that He is looking after them when no one else is. I felt like if I let go of the rail I would have be whisked off the Heaven. I felt that as long as I held on to the rail I would stay on earth. That is why I had one hand up and one on the rail. I really wanted to be with Jesus in Heaven at that particular time. I wasn't thinking about anyone or anything just Jesus. I was thanking and praising Him for all He has given and not given me. I didn't feel like I was even there for a minute. I felt kinda like on another dimension (if that makes sense). It is something that will always be special to me and I can't wait to get to Heaven to have it again."


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- Henry

Anonymous said...

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